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    April 01, 2022

    Le Moyne to Confer Honorary Degree in Absentia to Ukrainian President Zelensky

    Le Moyne College is one of several institutions that will recognize the leadership and perseverance of Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky by presenting him with an honorary degree in absentia at its 2022 Commencement Weekend in May.

    Articles in Inside Higher Ed, several Gannet newspapers and the Catholic Courier detail how Le Moyne and a number of other colleges and universities will present the degree.

    “He’s a person of the liberal arts - he’s trained in economics and law and in music,” said Linda LeMura, president of Le Moyne College, in the Inside Higher Ed story. “And beyond his intense bravery, his leadership skills are just remarkable. But he uses all of the talents across the spectrum to communicate and to inspire multiple generations around the globe.”

    Since Russia invaded Ukraine on Feb. 24, Zelensky has received international praise and recognition, opting to stay in Kyiv despite the obvious danger as Russia forces have made the Ukrainian capital a focus of its unprovoked and relentless attacks.

    More than 20 institutions have agreed in principle to present honorary degrees to Zelensky. The initiative started with Alfred University and quickly added other institutions. In addition to Le Moyne, the list from New York state includes Bard College, Rochester Institute of Technology, Canisius College, Hobart and William Smith Colleges, Hilbert College, Keuka College, Niagara University and Utica University. Schools from at least seven other states have also joined the effort, and additional colleges and universities are expected to continue to sign on to the initiative. 

    "We’re looking for role models for our students and he is the quintessential example in our times of heroic leadership," Le Moyne President Linda LeMura said in the Gannett article. "He’s remarkably courageous, he has a moral compass and he’s inspired people’s hearts and souls around the world."

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